Kelly Nelson - Vocals, Bass Guitar
Timm Kennedy - Vocals, Guitar
Steven DeCaprio - Guitar
Jerry Buchanan - Drums
Lillian Phaeton - Keyboards (no longer in the band)
Nine Katechis- Viola (on Awakening) RIP
On Twitter @Embers666
This album is long. Not because of the over all length (a little over an hour) but simply because of the lengths of the songs. The shortest song (not counting intro/outro) is five an a half minutes, the longest being 10:26. I don't mind long songs though. First impression as I flipped through the track list.
For black metal this album was unusually bass driven. The bass tended to either play simple riffs in the background, or mimic the lead of whatever instrument was playing. The bass was led by drums, again simplistic but fitting, with patterns made up of 8th and 16th notes. This album used some fast paced drums, but tended to stay away from blast beats. The guitar employs typical tremolo high pitched riffs as well as lower power chord riffs, switching from minimalistic to noticeable distortion. This contributes to the albums mix of mystical beauty and angry pessimism. That beauty shines in the violin solo in "Awakening." The entire album has a lonely sort of feel, but the synths it has along with the arrangements give it an epic sort of sound. The album is considerably melodic, with easy to pick out melodies and great harmonies (listen to "Shadows.") Vocally, this album is pretty basic, with typical black metal vocals, and reverb. Not amazing vocal work, but decent.
O-Overall, this is yet another album I would recommend. Personally, I'd consider it better for background music to set the mood of a room, but if atmospheric isn't what you're going for, then you'll still enjoy this album. Not easy listening, but nothing to harsh either. If you like black metal, then you should enjoy this album.
Amazing!!! Get lost in this album, it’s a perfect album to be buzzed and completely engulfed in sexual pleasure. You need the right partner for this, preferably one that knows how to shut the fuck up. Shhhh……don’t talk Baby…just thrust you hips and pleasure me….slow and steady Baby. What’s your hurry…Make it last!
The music is so sexually and beautiful.
Enjoy the splendor ladies and fuck I’m so jealous if you have a man that can pleasure you through this album.
Enjoy and get lost in the music and if you are like me alone and wishing to be bounded by a sexy one, I feel your agony.
Favorite tracks on this…the whole fucking album!!!!
The album is bookended by ambient instrumental tracks of about a minute-plus each, appropriately named “Drone Intro” and “Outro Drone” — these set the tone for the atmosphere and mood you can expect to complement the primarily black metal sound throughout the record. Otherwise, long format song structures abound, such as in “Eucharist” and “Dreams” which are each around ten minutes in length — as is the bonus track “Awakening” (which, despite containing some of the loudest and heaviest moments to be found here, is also full of slow, melancholy, doominess, and awash with viola, which was played by the late Nine Katechis, who formerly had performed live with the band.)
All of these songs feature clearly black-metal-soaked vocals (which are shared by bassist Kelly Nelson and guitarist Timm Kennedy), and the guitarists (Kennedy, along with Steven DeCaprio) employ traditional black-metal-style riffing and tremolo picking, and all of that sounds very good — the band could have just stuck to those genre standards and constructed a traditional black metal record, and it still would have been an excellent release. But Shadows goes far beyond the ordinary.
One of the main distinctions concerns Jerry Buchanan‘s drum parts. Whereas black metal is normally characterized by sterile, mechanical-sounding drumming — non-stop blastbeats drenched in reverb and oversaturated with the piercing clash of trebly cymbals ringing — what we have here feels quite free and organic. While reverb is still used here, it seems to be for a totally different purpose: instead of creating a feeling of extreme solitude, smothering in its expansiveness, the tone I am getting is one of openness, where the sounds are all given ample room to breathe. Likewise, the playing style seems free and loose — while still fitting perfectly into the context of a metal band, the feeling it gives me is sometimes closer to, say, John Bonham‘s jazzy explorations across the drum kit, than the incessant driving, pounding noise inherent in many black metal recordings.
Don’t get me wrong; I’m not trying to take away from the “blackness” of this band or their music. The vocals are consistently terrifying, in their juxtaposition of harsh snarls and deep growls, and all of the songs are overwhelmingly dark and heavy. But touches of nonconformity add to the sense of freshness and uniqueness. Furthermore, ambience and atmosphere are frequently the name of the game here — especially in some of the longer tracks, gloomy breaks offer moments of dark introspection and foreboding mellowness. Pondering over some of these lengthier reprieves from the band’s barrage of pulverizing force leads me to conclude that Shadows would be the result if Earth had ever decided to record a black metal album.